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Sustaining and Deepening Meditation Utilizing Shum

Lesson One from Merging With Siva is read with bhashya and emphasis on the externalities of the world, bihaishum and Parasiva. Then further exploration into Shum with the focus of holding one's inner vibration from one meditation to another by sustaining nalif--holding the inner vibration, niimf--awareness and iif awareness-- traveling, flowing constantly in the fifth and fourth dimensions.

Unedited Transcript:

In our daily Master Course Lesson. We just started over again for the umpteenth time. We're about to start with Lesson One from "Merging With Siva." As you can imagine logically, first lesson of "Merging With Siva" would have something to do with merging with Siva. So this one's called:

Parasiva, Life's Ultimate Goal

"Never have there been so many people living on the planet wondering, 'What is the real goal, the final purpose, of life?' However, man is blinded by his ignorance and his concern with the externalities of the world. He is caught, enthralled, bound by karma. The ultimate realizations available are beyond his understanding and remain to him obscure, even intellectually. Man's ultimate quest, the final evolutionary frontier, is within man himself. It is the Truth spoken by Vedic rishis as the Self within man, attainable through control of the mind and purification."

So, think the key idea there is we're blinded by our concern with the externalities of the world. Having the world in it's proper place in our mind is always a challenge, cause the world is people. And people have a way of challenging us sometimes. We have trouble getting along with some people, we certainly don't like other people and unfortunately, so many people mistreat us and they really shouldn't. So it's so easy to get bound up in our concerns about the world in the form of other people. So, you know, I like ask when it comes to that, challenge someone and say: "Well what does the world have to do in order for you to be happy? You know, what demands are you placing on the world? What has to happen? Who has to change before you'll be happy? Who has to treat you in a different way? What has to be different before you'll be happy?" So, when you start to think about it like that, you realize you know: Maybe I can be happy no matter what. You know, it starts to make more sense, but, normally we don't think that way. We're very tied up in the externalities in our relationships with people and cause they're this way we can't be happy. We can only be happy if they'd go the other way. But, you know it's not Gurudeva's teachings, you know. We used to come into the temple every morning and say bihaishum which means contentment or happiness. It's a state of mind we can claim independent of the externalities of the world. You know, that's as it says here: "Control of the mind. The Self is within man attainable through control of the mind." So that's part of the control of the mind is trying to be happy, no matter what and not looking at our happiness as being conditioned upon something external to us. There's no reason for it to be. Gurudeva said it so simply: "Life is meant to be lived joyously." It's not a conditioned statement, it doesn't say when everything is going the way we want it to. It doesn't say that. It says: "Life is meant to be lived joyously." So, the idea is, joy is within, happiness is within us, and if we can step back a bit from the externalities of the mind we can turn our awareness within into the state that's always joyful, always happy and find it. Of course, we have to be realistic when it comes to like a major tragedy in our life; we're not talking about something like that but, it's usually the small things that irritate us. It's not the big things. So if a tragedy comes along it's fine to be sad. You know, it's part of life too, but, it's the small things that we don't need to be sad about. We don't let them, we don't need to let them get to us as they tend to. So we can stay detached from them and say: Well that's the way that person is, that's the way the world is, that's this, that's that and not mind if we get mistreated. Then we can be happy through control of the mind.

"It is karma that keeps us from knowing of and reaching life's final goal, yet it is wrong to even call it a goal. It is what is known by the knower to have always existed. It is not a matter of becoming the Self, but of realizing that you were never, but of realizing that you never were not the Self. And what is that Self? It is Parasiva. It is God. That which is beyond the mind, beyond thought, feeling and emotion, beyond time, form and space. That is what all men are seeking, looking for, longing for. When karma is controlled through yoga and dharma well performed, and the energies are transmuted to their ultimate state, the Vedic Truth of life discovered by the rishis so long ago becomes obvious."

So, that's an important aspect of Parasiva, "realizing that you never were not the Self." Or, said another way: The Self is there to be claimed. And it doesn't relate to time, form and space so, there's nothing particularly that you have to do to claim it. It's just there but, because of the externalities, our awareness is caught up in the externalities or externalized. We're looking out instead of in and if our karma is not smooth and we're kind of going through rough times all the time; we're always putting out fires, we're always handling emergencies. Our life is never sublime enough to look within. So Gurudeva gives us an important key here: How do we control karma so that we're not always putting out fires, we're not always handling emergencies? Through yoga and dharma well performed. So that's the key, you know. We need to do our duties in life well, understand what they are and do them well. Not neglect them, not stray from virtue which is also part of dharma. Not do things we shouldn't because that really stirs up the mind. And through yoga, meditation, learning to control our thoughts. Regularly disciplining our mind. So, turning within instead of constantly looking without. So, when we learn to turn within regularly and we're fulfilling our duties well in life and following virtue, what happens? There's very few fires to put out. There's very few emergencies in our life. Our life is going smoothly and therefore that means our karma is under control. Doesn't mean we don't face karma but, it means it's constantly, it's not constantly upsetting us, constantly disturbing us, constantly overwhelming us.

"The goal is to realize God Siva in His absolute, or transcendent, state, which when realized is your own ultimate state -- timeless, formless, spaceless Truth. That Truth lies beyond the thinking mind, beyond the feeling nature, beyond action or any movement of the vrittis, the waves of the mind. Being, seeing, this Truth then gives the correct perspective, brings the external realities into perspective. They then are seen as true, they then are seen as truly unrealities, yet not discarded as such."

So this has to do with a point of reference and it's, there's a number of writings on this in the Shum work I've been reading recently. So, looked at in a simple way, when we're caught up in the externalities of the mind; we're out here and we're trying to look within and it's really hard to look within, cause our awareness is so externalized. You know, we look within and it seems so far away, so distant, so small. So, the idea of the Shum and the basic practices of simshumbisi and all, is to turn it around so we're within, looking out. That's the idea. Shumif. We're within, not, we're not next to the Self or anything, you know, we're not that far in, but we're within looking out. Gurudeva called that: "Being two thirds within and one third in the external mind." So, that's the goal to have the point of reference inside looking out at the world. When we do that, then we don't react as much to things. We realize that everything isn't wrong. We realize we can't change everything you know, we have a looser read about the world. We're not so concerned about, that's having an internal point of reference. This is even deeper, it's saying: Make your point of reference the Self. "Being, seeing this Truth then gives the correct perspective, brings the external realities into perspective. Then they are seen as truly unrealities yet not discarded as such."

So that's the idea that Parasiva doesn't change. It's a permanent truth. And form or maya--the mind, is constantly changing and in it's deepest sense is unreal, cause it's covering up that which doesn't change, the truth. But you don't want to treat it as unreal, because, the karmas that are coming to it, to you from it, are very real. And the opportunities it provides you for spiritual growth are very real. So, it's an interesting balance of perspective. Simple way of understanding it is you know, if you're going to school and you're constantly saying school is unreal, how much are you going to learn? Not very much, right? You're not taking it seriously. You're not getting the benefit out of going to school, if you're going to school and saying it's all unreal. You have to take it as real in order to learn from it and benefit from it. So, that's why Gurudeva says it's "relative reality." It has a reality, but it's relative; it's constantly changing, it's not a permanent truth.

"This intimate experience must be experienced while in the physical body. One comes back and back again into flesh simply to realize Parasiva. Nothing more. Yet, the Self, or Parasiva, is an experience only after it has been experienced. Yet, it is not an experience at all, but the only possible non experience, which registers in its aftermath upon the mind of man. Prior to that, it is a goal. After realization, one thing is lost, the desire for the Self."

So, lot of ideas there. One is that it takes a physical body to realize the Self. Can't do it without it. So, make the most of it while you have one. Make some spiritual progress toward Self Realization. "Yet, the Self, or Parasiva, is an experience only after it has been experienced." But, that's why we call it a non experience. The only possible non experience. Cause the experiencer is absent. Our awareness! It dissolved, it went away. For you can only have an experience if you have an experiencer. Have an experience or an experience. So if the experiencer goes away there's no experience. So, it's the absence of the experiencer or awareness that is another way of talking about the Realization of Parasiva. It's one of the beauties of the Shum language, it focuses you on awareness. Of awareness dissolving, it's a very simple concept. Otherwise realizing God can be very abstract. You know what's it mean to realize God? But to identify awareness and then for awareness to dissolve; it's a clear intellectual concept, its very well defined. But, all you can say is about, what you can describe the before and the after, but, you can't describe the during. That's what he's trying to say. "Registers in its aftermath upon the mind of man." So you're not sitting there saying: "Oh, that's the Self" and you're saying: "Oh that must have been the Self" you know, it's the aftermath experience that registers upon the mind of man.

So, that's high-minded enough. It's going. So that relates to Sutra One.

"Siva's followers strive for God Realization as the first and foremost goal of life. They learn to dance with Siva, live with Siva, merge with Siva. Deep within, they discover their eternal, immortal oneness with God."

But then there's Sutra Two.

"Siva's followers are ever mindful that life's purpose is to wholeheartedly serve God, Gods and guru and fulfill the four traditional Hindu goals: duty (dharma), wealth (artha), love (kama) and liberation (moksha)."

So, that give a fuller picture when you read that one because, sometimes when you talk more about liberation you think you're supposed to abandon duties. Abandon dharma, but, that's not what Gurudeva says. You're supposed to fulfill dharma, fulfill your duties in life having in mind the goal of realizing well is the ultimate goal. So fulfilling duties is important.

So moving on, this is Shum; I found very interesting. Nalif! Anybody remember nalif?


"Nalif is holding, Nalif is the holding of the inner vibration from one meditation to another. For instance, if you perform anif in the morning (which means being totally quiet) it sets a vibration which you feel all through the day; and we strengthen that vibration when performing anif just before we go to sleep at night. This holding of the inner memory, so to speak, or inner vibration, from one anif period to another is called nalif. It is a challenge in itself, holding the inner awareness until our next meditation, all through the day, holding that inner thread so that we remain two-thirds within and only one-third in external consciousness."

So, one of the ideas here in nalif is, it points out something interesting. We may think that what's important is the meditation. You know, we meditate in the morning, we meditate at night or, we meditate in the morning, we meditate the next day. We're meditating regularly. But equally important is what happens between the meditations. If we can sustain nalif. So, you know, it's like we're doing two things at once on your computer. You're doing one thing and then you put it in the background and you do something else in the foreground, but what you put in the background is still going on. So that's like nalif. You're meditating, when you come out, but your meditation doesn't go away; it goes into the background. It's still there, it's still alive, but it's in the background as things are on a computer. It's not in the foreground. So to become aware of it you have to detach from the foreground and say: "Oh yeah that's still going on in the background, I forgot I was running that program." So, it's in the background which means it's still going on, it's still developing. So, said another way, it's still alive just waiting for you to come back to it and pick up where you left off. It's just sitting there waiting for you to come back.

So, I once asked Gurudeva, I said: "Gurudeva, I believe you can carry a meditation from one life to the next. Does that count as nalif?"

And he said: "No that's something different."

That's kind of a deeper knowledge. But you actually can. You can go to a certain point of meditation in one life and then it's still there for you to find in another life. Subsequent life, pick it up and develop it. But it's not nalif.

So, if what happens between meditations is important, what are some guidelines? So, this is the definition.

"Nalif is generally held within the vibration of the kalingkasim kamshumalinga (the fifth chakra). It is possible in consciousness into bivumbika, rehmtyenali, tyemavumna or kamakadiisareh (the four higher chakras) and not break the nalif, but getting into a detailed discussion or argument within rehnamtyevum, or being remorseful or reminiscing the past in akaiilisimbi, would break the nalif; it would then with some effort, have to be reestablished. Nalif is especially necessary to those yogi tapasvins who hope to advance in their raja yoga on the Saiva path.

So this shows we can't get tangled up with other people, or tangled up with ourselves in consciousness, or dwell too much in the past even. Just thinking heavily about the past we loose the nalif. Cause all the emotions come up. Think heavily about the past, you bring up emotion and that covers up your meditation. So, we need to be careful to avoid those kinds of things, otherwise, we're not building the meditation. You know it's like an analogy I always use, this filling up a bathtub. Your meditation is filling up a bathtub. And then if you get into arguments during the day and concerns and those kinds of emotional congestions, it's like pulling out the plug and all the water goes out. So, it's obviously counterproductive, right? Filling it up during one part of the day and emptying it during the next part of the day. You're not, you're not building up. You're not continuing to fill it up. So, that's why what happens between meditations is equally important as the meditation itself. In order for the meditation to properly build, we can't get into these kinds of entanglements.

So this next one is interesting. Has to do with iif. So niimf is the awareness we usually talk about but this one is deeper. "Pronounced iif an important tantra taught during the positive karmas of a student. The observation of one's awareness flowing or traveling from one area of the higher mind to another. One may usually be only conscious of niimf in its flow then in deep meditations of iif and its flow. It is possible however, to be simultaneously aware of iif uu niimf each independent of one another and yet dependent upon each other."

Gurudeva's bhashya:

"Iif is awareness traveling, flowing constantly in the fifth and fourth dimensions. Unless one is totally aware, one is not at all conscious of the happening but only conscious of niimf in its flow, then in deep meditation of iif and its flow. [So that's like noticing something going on in the background.] There are times when niimf changes places with iif and the change is unnoticed until afterwards. This is when one begins to see intuitively that which is in the fourth and fifth dimensions. This collage then is when we are completely aware in the fifth and fourth dimensions such as in mamsani or mambashum. When niimf is flowing in daily life being aware of fifth, fourth, third and second dimensions, iif is flowing in the fifth and fourth independently. This accounts for intuitive flashes.

"When a natye works on a mamsani or mambashum the nalif vibration is iif continuing within the areas and neighboring areas of the mamsani or mambashum, while niimf is totally aware in other areas. When the natye goes into the mamsani or mambashum, again niimf changes places with iif and a place of seeing deeper into related areas than did occur in the previous meditation."

So, that's interesting to think about. So, that's the inner side of nalif, leads to iif. So, the bottom line is to look at what happens between meditations as important as the meditation itself and not to get too externalized; particularly, don't get into something argumentative with someone else stirring up all that emotion or even dwelling excessively on the past will break the meditation, to place strong emotion.

So, Gurudeva's idea there is just think a few days in the future and a few days in the past then, then you don't excessively bring up the past. I always avoid meeting someone who talks a lot about the past because it's something we don't do in the monastery and you realize it's a different world then you're used to you know. It's like there's a movie going on in their mind, they're telling you about it, it's dominating their mind. What happened so many years ago and of course they're enjoying talking about it, but and nothing wrong with that, but, if you're trying to make progress in meditation you, you want to minimize that. You don't want to talk excessively about the past that's more than a few days old because, it lowers your consciousness. Externalizing.

There, well, thank you very much.

Aum Namah Sivaya

Have a good week.

Aum Namah Sivaya, Aum Namah Sivaya

[End of transcript]

Photo of  Gurudeva
The Self, the realization of God, Parasiva, is immanent now within everyone, only realizable according to the soul's evolution, which can be hastened through the practice of yoga.